Six bakeries are competing for a supermarket listing on Channel 4 TV show Aldi’s Next Big Thing.
The show gives independent food and drink producers from across the country the chance to present and pitch their products to Aldi. The episode to be screened tomorrow (27 October) at 8pm is focused on baked goods and will feature six businesses that have been selected from hundreds of entrants.
One of the six will be given a place on Aldi shelves by a judging panel comprising Aldi managing director of buying Julie Ashfield, grocer and cookbook author Chris Bavin, and TV presenter Anita Rani.
The six bakery businesses in tomorrow’s competition are:
Belle & Wilde: Located in East Sussex, Belle & Wilde produces gluten-free savoury snacks and sweet treats
Harrison & Griffiths: This Nottingham-based business supplies a range of Caribbean fruit and rum cakes
London Apron: Run by Silvi Cives from Argentina, this business produces plant-based meringues from its bakery in London
Pastry Pedaleur: Based in Chester, Pastry Pedaleur supplies a selection of classic French baking with an Indian twist
Project D: A Derby-based doughnut supplier that was last week crowned Online Bakery Business of the Year in the Baking Industry Awards
Yum Yum Sushi Desserts: Based in Stourbridge in the West Midlands, this business supplies premium desserts
Products from the businesses will be presented to Aldi’s Ashfield, who will consider factors such as price, packaging, shopper demand, and the ability to scale up before whittling the six contestants down to two.
The two finalists are then given four weeks to address any feedback, before presenting improved products to Ashfield so she can decide which will appear as a Specialbuy in 970 stores.
The winner of the first episode of the show, screened last week, was Sussex-based pie-maker Mud Foods. The firm’s Chip Shop Chicken Curry Pie, which contains free-range chicken in a sweet curry sauce infused with fresh ginger, chilli and coriander, has since gone on sale in Aldi stores.
“When they called out Mud had won I was genuinely in a state of shock,” said Mud Foods owner Christian Barrington. “It was a moment of absolute disbelief but once it had sunk in it was pure joy and elation.”